The one practice that I have kept up since my days as an English student way back as an undergraduate is keeping a “Words/Phrase List” at my ready. A words and phrase list is just a handy list of words and phrases that you can have close by to help out when writing, such as words that are sometimes either too hard to remember, or the spelling of a word is just too difficult, even for the automatic spell checker to handle. I keep my list on a couple of 10cm x 20cm flash cards which are placed right in front of me here at my desk at home. The list is there for me whenever I need a hint, or help, with those hard to remember words when I am writing.
Compiling the list is also a way for me to capture words, especially when reading, that are new, rare or different from my regular, normal, vocabulary. For example, yesterday, while watching my favourite television news channel, they quoted a Tweet from Twitter on the Royal Baby, Prince George (who was born this week), and the author used the word, “Vitriolic,” a word that I can say I never came across before. So I wrote it down, searched it for its meaning, and then scribed it down with its meaning on my Words List for future reference.
So, here are some of my words and phrases from my private Word List. This list is by no means the entire complete list, nor is it in any order other than chronological. You will also notice some French mixed in there as well, as I am trying to learn that language. So, without further ado…
- Au contraire
- Bon Voyage
- Per ce
- Faux Pas
- Ontology (philosophy of science)
- Epistemology (theory of knowledge)
- Heuristic value
Even today as I was editing this post out I came across some really good words that I wanted to add to my list, i.e, “Eclectic.” The Word List helps me out, and I thought I would put this out there for anyone else who I hope may like this idea too. I have over 100 words on my list, and it keeps growing!